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I will add to your yoke: my father hath chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scorpions.
12 ¶ So Jeroboam and all the people came to Rehoboam the third day, as the king had appointed, saying, Come to me again the third day.
13 And the king answered the people roughly, and forsook the old men's counsel that they gave him;
14 And spake to them after the counsel of the young men, saying, My father made your yoke heavy, and I will add to your yoke: my father also chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scorpions.
15 Wherefore the king hearkened not unto the people; for the cause was from the LORD, that he might perform his saying, which the LORD spake by Ahijah the Shilonite unto Jeroboam the son of Nebat.
16 So when all Israel saw that the king hearkened not unto them, the people answered the king, saying, What portion have we in David? neither have we inheritance in the son of Jesse: to your tents, O Israel: now see to thine own house, David. So Israel departed unto their tents.
17 But as for the children of Israel which dwelt in the cities of Judah, Rehoboam reigned over them.
18 Then king Rehoboam sent Adoram, who was over the tribute; and all Israel stoned him with stones, that he died. Therefore king Rehoboam made speed to get him up to his chariot, to flee to Jerusalem.
19 So Israel rebelled against the house of David unto this day. 20 And it came to pass, when all Israel heard that Jeroboam was come again, that they sent and called him unto the congregation, and made him king over all Israel: there was none that followed the house of David, but the tribe of Judah only.
21 ¶ And when Rehoboam was come to Jerusalem, he assembled all the house of Judah, with the tribe of Benjamin, an hundred and fourscore thousand chosen men, which were warriors, to fight against the house of Israel, to bring the kingdom again to Rehoboam the son of Solomon.
22 But the word of God came unto Shemaiah the man of God, saying,
23 Speak unto Rehoboam, the son of Solomon, king of Judah, and unto all the house of Judah and Benjamin, and to the remnant of the people, saying,
24 Thus saith the LORD, Ye shall not go up nor fight against your brethren the children of Israel: return every man to his house; for this thing is from me. They hearkened, therefore, to the word of the LORD, and returned to depart, according to the word of the LORD.
25 T Then Jeroboam built Shechem in mount Ephraim, and dwelt therein; and went out from thence and built Penuel.
26 *And Jeroboam said in his heart, Now shall the kingdom return to the house of David:
* We here have one of the most artful and successful devices to corrupt and destroy religion. Selfishness lay at the foundation of Jeroboam's conduct. And this, alas, in every age, has been most fatally productive of false religions, and of
27 If this people go up to do sacrifice in the house of the LORD at Jerusalem, then shall the heart of this people turn again unto their lord, even unto Rehoboam king of Judah, and they shall kill me, and go again to Rehoboam king of Judah.
28 Whereupon the king took counsel, and made two calves of gold, and said unto them, It is too much for you to go up to Jerusalem: behold thy gods, O Israel, which brought thee up out of the land of Egypt.
29 And he set the one in Beth-el, and the other put he in Dan. 30 And this thing became a sin: for the people went to worship before the one, even unto Dan.
31 And he made an house of high places, and made priests of the lowest of the people, which were not of the sons of Levi.
32 And Jeroboam ordained a feast in the eighth month, on the fifteenth day of the month, like unto the feast that is in Judah, and he offered upon the altar. So did he in Beth-el, sacrificing unto the calves that he had made: and he placed in Beth-el the priests of the high places which he had made.
33 So he offered upon the altar which he had made in Beth-el the fifteenth day of the eighth month, even in the month which he had devised of his own heart; and ordained a feast unto the children of Israel: and he offered upon the altar, and burnt incense.
2 CHRONICLES, XI.
13 And the priests and the Levites that were in all Israel, resorted to him out of all their coasts.
14 (For the Levites left their suburbs, and their possession, and came to Judah and Jerusalem: for Jeroboam and his sons had cast them off from executing the priest's office unto the LORD.
15 And he ordained him priests for the high places, and for the devils, and for the calves which he had made.)
16 And after them out of all the tribes of Israel, such as set their hearts to seek the LORD God of Israel, came to Jerusalem to sacrifice unto the LORD God of their fathers.
corruptions in the true. The fear of losing the government was the selfish motive. The art of his conduct lay in addressing the ease and convenience of the people, "It is too much for you to go up to Jerusalem;" in pretending to worship the same gods which brought them up out of Egypt; in making the worship, in some measure, resemble the true, and in selecting from the lower classes his priests. This latter was calculated to secure the favor of the populace by raising them, without any preparation, to the offices of ministers of religion. It was also calculated to prevent all instruction on the subject of religion, by which the truth should be perceived, and his errors detected. By this course, Jeroboam has become famous indeed for his name is mentioned in the subsequent history something like twenty times, as the sinner who "made Israel to sin." From the time Israel left Egypt, the nation had manifested a strong propensity to idolatry. But revival after revival of the worship of Jehovah had saved them; and under the government of pious David, they had become a very numerous and prosperous people. But from the accession of Jeroboam to the throne of the ten tribes, no pious king reigned, and no extensive revival of true religion was enjoyed. God raised up prophets who labored to bring them back to his worship and fear; and a small remnant were saved by their means. But sin, like a consumption, was continually wasting their prosperity and their national being. Idolatry, encouraged by their kings, prevailed against all obstacles presented by the imperfect knowledge of the Scriptures, and the faithful labors of the LORD's prophets. And in 254 years from the setting up of Jeroboam's calves, the ten tribes ceased for ever to be a body politic.
The Prophet without a name.
17 So they strengthened the kingdom of Judah, and made Rehoboam the son of Solomon strong, three years: for three years they walked in the way of David and Solomon.
1 KINGS, XIII.
B. C. 974.
1 And behold, there came a man of God out of Judah by the word of the LORD unto Beth-el: and Jeroboam stood by the altar to burn incense.
2 And he cried against the altar in the word of the LORD, and said, O altar, altar, thus saith the LORD; Behold, a child shall be born unto the house of David, Josiah by name; and *upon thee shall he offer the priests of the high places that burn incense upon thee, and men's bones shall be burnt upon thee.
3 And he gave a sign the same day, saying, This is the sign which the LORD hath spoken; Behold, the altar shall be rent, and the ashes that are upon it shall be poured out.
4 And it came to pass, when king Jeroboam heard the saying of the man of God, which had cried against the altar in Bethel, that he put forth his hand from the altar, saying, Lay hold on him. And his hand, which he put forth against him, dried up, so that he could not pull it in again to him.
5 The altar also was rent, and the ashes poured out from the altar, according to the sign which the man of God had given by the word of the LORD.
6 And the king answered and said unto the man of God, Entreat now the face of the LORD thy God, and pray for me, that my hand may be restored me again. And the man of God besought the LORD, and the king's hand was restored him again, and became as it was before.
7 And the king said unto the man of God, Come home with me, and refresh thyself, and I will give thee a reward.
8 And the man of God said unto the king, If thou wilt give me half thine house, I will not go in with thee, neither will I eat bread nor drink water in this place:
9 For so was it charged me by the word of the LORD, saying, Eat no bread, nor drink water, nor turn again by the same way that thou
10 So he went another way, and returned not by the way that he came to Beth-el.
11 ¶ Now there dwelt an old prophet in Beth-el; and his sons came and told him all the works that the man of God had done that day in Beth-el: the words which he had spoken unto the king, them they told also to their father.
12 And their father said unto them, What way went he? for his sons had seen what way the man of God went, which came from Judah.
13 And he said unto his sons, Saddle me the ass. So they saddled him the ass, and he rode thereon,
14 And went after the man of God, and found him sitting under an
*See 2 Kings, xxiii.; or, B. C. 624.
oak and he said unto him, Art thou the man of God that camest from Judah? And he said, I am.
15 Then he said unto him, Come home with me, and eat bread. 16 And he said, I may not return with thee, nor go in with thee: neither will I eat bread nor drink water with thee in this place :
17 For it was said to me by the word of the LORD, Thou shalt eat no bread, nor drink water there, nor turn again to go by the way that thou camest.
18 He said unto him, I am a prophet also as thou art; and an angel spake unto me by the word of the LORD, saying, Bring him back with thee into thine house, that he may eat bread, and drink water. he lied unto him.
19 So he went back with him, and did eat bread in his house, and drank water.
20 ¶ And it came to pass, as they sat at the table, that the word of the LORD came unto the prophet that brought him back:
21 And he cried unto the man of God that came from Judah, saying, Thus saith the LORD, Forasmuch as thou hast disobeyed the mouth of the LORD, and hast not kept the commandment which the LORD thy God commanded thee,
22 But camest back, and hast eaten bread and drunk water in the place, of the which the LORD did say to thee, Eat no bread, and drink no water; thy carcass shall not come unto the sepulchre of thy fathers.
23 And it came to pass after he had eaten bread, and after he had drunk, that he saddled for him the ass, to wit, for the prophet whom he had brought back.
24 And when he was gone, a lion met him by the way, and slew him and his carcass was cast in the way, and the ass stood by it, the lion also stood by the carcass.
25 And, behold, men passed by, and saw the carcass cast in the way, and the lion standing by the carcass: and they came and told it in the city where the old prophet dwelt.
26 And when the prophet that brought him back from the way heard thereof, he said, It is the man of God who was disobedient unto the word of the LORD; therefore the LORD hath delivered him unto the lion, which hath torn him, and slain him, according to the word of the LORD, which he spake unto him.
28 And he went and found his carcass cast in the way, and the ass and the lion standing by the carcass: the lion had not eaten the carcass, nor torn the ass.
27 And he spake to his sons, saying, Saddle me the ass. saddled him.
29 And the prophet took up the carcass of the man of God, and laid it upon the ass, and brought it back and the old prophet came to the city, to mourn, and to bury him.
30 And he laid his carcass in his own grave; and they mourned over him, saying, Alas, my brother!
31 And it came to pass, after he had buried him, that he spake to his sons, saying, When I am dead, then bury me in the sepulchre wherein the man of God is buried; lay my bones beside his bones:
32 For the saying which he cried by the word of the LORD against the altar in Beth-el, and against all the houses of the high
places which are in the cities of Samaria, shall surely come to
33 ¶ After this thing Jeroboam returned not from his evil way, but made again of the lowest of the people priests of the high places: whosoever would, he consecrated him, and he became one of the priests of the high places.
34 And this thing became sin unto the house of Jeroboam, even to cut it off, and to destroy it from off the face of the earth.
2 CHRONICLES, XII.
B. C. 971.
1 And it came to pass, when Rehoboam had established the kingdom, and had strengthened himself, he forsook the law of the LORD, and all Israel with him.
2 And it came to pass, that in the fifth year of king Rehoboam, Shishak king of Egypt came up against Jerusalem, because they had transgressed against the LORD.
3 With twelve hundred chariots, and threescore thousand horsemen: and the people were, without number that came with him out of Egypt: the Lubims, the Sukkiims, and the Ethiopians.
4 And he took the fenced cities which pertained to Judah, aud came to Jerusalem.
5 ¶ Then came Shemaiah the prophet to Rehoboam, and to the princes of Judah that were gathered together to Jerusalem because of Shishak, and said unto them, Thus saith the LORD, Ye have forsaken me, and therefore have I also left you in the hand of Shishak.
6 Whereupon the princes of Israel and the king humbled themselves; and they said, The LORD is righteous.
7 And when the LORD saw that they humbled themselves, the word of the LORD came to Shemaiah, saying, They have humbled themselves; therefore I will not destroy them, but I will grant them some deliverance; and my wrath shall not be poured out upon Jerusalem by the hand of Shishak.
8 Nevertheless they shall be his servants; that they may know my service, and the service of the kingdoms of the countries.
9 So Shishak king of Egypt came up against Jerusalem, and took away the treasures of the house of the LORD, and the treasures of the king's house; he took all he carried away also the shields of gold which Solomon had made.
10 Instead of which king Rehoboam made shields of brass, and committed them to the hands of the chief of the guard, that kept the entrance of the king's house.
11 And when the king entered into the house of the LORD, the guard came and fetched them, and brought them again into the guard chamber.
12 And when he humbled himself, the wrath of the LORD turned from him, that he would not destroy him altogether: and also in Judah things went well.
13 So king Rehoboam strengthened himself in Jerusalem, and
*Thus, in the space of five years from the death of Solomon, was this powerful and wealthy kingdom reduced to a state of vassalage by sin.